Nudging Towards Use

christmastreeI have just read a reveiw (scroll down the page after clicking to see the review) of the book Nudge by Thaler and Sunstein and I think it was what I was trying to do today when introducing online collaborative tools to my colleagues.  By showing how I use them and the difference they make to my work I was nudging them towards making a decision to use them in their work.

‘For a nudge to be successful it needs to be ‘anchored’. You are unlikely to choose well when you don’t know what the decision will ‘look like’ or what the benefits of that decision will be. It is hard to overstate the impact of peer pressure – we nudge each other all the time – and social influences are very powerful.’

I showed bookmarking, blogging and Voice Thread; two ideas that we can use in our own work and one that we can use with children (although I know that children can use bookmarking and blogging as well).  One of the tools that attracted a lot of  attention was the bookmarking and in particular diigo for its tools to highlight and comment on texts.  There are several areas of our work where reading and critiquing are important aspects and this would be a tool that would facilitate it.

And if you were wondering what it is in the photo, this is the christmas tree that my team made out of newspaper and masking tape in the afternoon.  It was required to stand on its own and to have an angel on top.  Although we fulfilled the criteria, ours was not the most aesthetically pleasing, looking a tad scruffy.

What is a working wall?

talkworkingwallWe talk a lot about working walls and model them on our talk for writing training so it is fantastic to get some feedback from teachers about what they are doing in their classrooms.

A working wall is a temporary display for any or all curriculum areas that shows the build up or progress towards an outcome. It is not a neatly presented, double-backed display but an ‘in the moment’ display captured whilst working, that becomes a scaffold for children and an explicit visual support of the journey. In literacy, by the time the children get to the writing stage there will be many supports for the writing on the working wall and teachers will be modelling how to use the ideas and practises that have been generated.

I particularly like this series of images because they show so clearly the place of talk for writing in the teachiww2imitationng sequence.  Can you spot the story-mapping, warming up the word and the support from visual images?  They also take the children through the stages of imitation and innovation.  So many children need to linger longer in the imitation phase in order that they embed the language patterns and start to find their own voices.  Children will then naturally move into the innovate and finally invent phases.

When talking about book displays in  The Reading Environment, Aiden Chambers states

they deeply influence the mental set of the people who see them.

I see no reason why working walls should have any less of an influence.

ww3learnstoryOur thanks go to Mark Cole at West Croft Juniors for these wonderful pictures of his working walls linked to talk for writing. It would behard hard not to succeed at writing in this classroom.

Which aspects of talk for writing have had the most impact upon your children’s writing?